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ViacomCBS to Buy 49% Stake in Miramax

ViacomCBS agrees to buy a 49% stake in Miramax, the iconic film and television studio from beIN Media Group for $375 million.
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ViacomCBS (VIACA) - Get ViacomCBS Inc. Class A Report said Friday it agreed to buy a 49% stake in Miramax, the iconic film and television studio co-founded by disgraced film producer Harvey Weinstein, from beIN Media Group for $375 million.

Shares of ViacomCBS were up slightly to $42.10.

The newly created ViacomCBS, the result of a $28-billion all-stock merger of CBS and Viacom, said that the transaction is scheduled to close in the first quarter of 2020.

Miramax's current leadership team will continue to head the company, which has a library of more than 700 titles, including "Pulp Fiction," "Shakespeare in Love," "Good Will Hunting," and "No Country for Old Men."

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Under the terms of the transaction, ViacomCBS will acquire 49% of Miramax from beIN for a total investment of $375 million, which includes an upfront cash payment of about $150 million, along with a commitment to invest $45 million annually over the next five years, or $225 million, to be used for new film and television productions and working capital.

In addition to MTV, Nickelodeon, Showtime, Comedy Central, ViacomCBS owns the Paramount film and TV studio, which entered into an exclusive distribution agreement for Miramax's film library' and an exclusive agreement allowing Paramount to develop, produce, finance, and distribute new film and television projects based on Miramax's IP.

Miramax was founded in 1979 by brothers Bob and Harvey Weinstein and was the leading independent studio before being acquired by Walt Disney (DIS) - Get The Walt Disney Company Report in 1993.  

The Weinsteins left Disney in 2005 and founded a new company, the Weinstein Company. Harvey Weinstein was later accused of sexual assault by a number of women. He was indicted on rape charges in New York in 2018.

Disney sold Miramax to Filmyard Holdings in 2010 and then the studio was sold to beIN Media Group, a spinoff of Al Jazeera Media Network, headquartered in Doha, Qatar.